Torture in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Spain]  [other countries]
 

Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery

In the early years of the 21st Century                                                      gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Spain.htm

Kingdom of Spain

Spain's mixed capitalist economy supports a GDP that on a per capita basis is approaching that of the largest West European economies.

After considerable success since the mid-1990s in reducing unemployment to a 2007 low of 8%, Spain suffered a major spike in unemployment in the last few months of 2008, finishing the year with an unemployment rate over 13%.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Description: Spain

Spain is a transit and destination country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation and forced labor.   There has been an increase in the number of minors trafficked into Spain for forced begging. In smaller numbers, Chinese victims are trafficked to Spain, primarily for forced labor. A coalition of 20 NGOs in Spain estimates that there are at least 50,000 people in Spain who are victims of human trafficking. Particularly vulnerable to trafficking are migrants from Romania and Bulgaria and possibly unaccompanied migrant minors, though there is limited data available on the latter group. - U.S. State Dept Trafficking in Persons Report, June, 2009 [full country report]

 

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Spain.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.

*** FEATURED ARTICLES ***

Spanish police rescue hostage boy

BBC News, 9 June 2006

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/5063150.stm

[accessed 23 December 2010]

Spain has cracked a number of groups smuggling Nigerian women.  Two Nigerian women have been arrested in Spain accused of stealing a child and forcing his mother into prostitution to pay their ransom. The mother, also Nigerian, claims her son was snatched from her shortly after he was born four years ago. She said the women demanded 45,000 euros (£31,000) for his return and threatened her with "voodoo".

The Price of a Slave in Brazil

Bernardete Toneto, [originally in Portuguese in the newspaper Brasil de Fato], February 2004

www.brazzil.com/component/content/article/74-february-2004/1662.html

[accessed 17 April 2012]

AN ANIMAL IN A ZOO - Before leaving Brazil, I suspected prostitution but I never imagined that I would be a prisoner, threatened day and night. At the house, we were slaves. I never got anything, not money, not clothes. I didn't have my documents so I couldn't leave. We were given very little food, and we had to stay up until 5 am every day, trying to get customers.

We couldn't even leave the house without being accompanied by "security." One of the girls was threatened with death after she left for a weekend. They thought she went looking for the Brazilian consulate. We never had routine medical exams, much less tests for AIDS.

I fled when I met a Brazilian customer to whom I told my story. It seems that he had contact with other groups because nine days after I told him my story he returned, gave me a false passport and a ticket back to Brazil.  I escaped, but even today I think of my friends there who are being held prisoners, like animals in a zoo.

 

*** ARCHIVES ***

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2005/61676.htm

[accessed 24 December 2010]

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS – Methods used by traffickers to maintain control of their victims included physical abuse, forced use of drugs, withholding of travel documents, and threats to the victim's family. Women from Eastern Europe reportedly were subject to more severe violence and threats by traffickers.

Traffickers lured some victims from other regions with false promises of employment in service industries and agriculture but then forced them into prostitution upon their arrival in the country. The media reported that criminal networks often lured their victims by using travel agencies and newspaper advertisements in their home countries that promised guaranteed employment in Spain. Typically in the case of Romanian organized networks, women were forced into prostitution where 90 percent of their earnings were marked for the criminal network; men were often employed in low-paying construction jobs. Clandestine clothing production and sales as well as work in restaurants were typical employment for illegal Asian immigrants, who came to the country with false documents through trafficking networks.

Concluding Observations Of The Committee On The Rights Of The Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 7 June 2002

www1.umn.edu/humanrts/crc/spain2002.html

[accessed 24 December 2010]

[8] In line with its previous recommendation (ibid., para.20), the Committee welcomes the improvement of safeguards in the cases of inter-country adoption contained in Act 1/1996 and the ratification of the 1993 Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in respect of Inter-country Adoption.

Spain Links Voodoo to Forced-Prostitution Case

Victoria Burnett, New York Times, Madrid, May 22, 2009

www.nytimes.com/2009/05/23/world/europe/23spain.html?_r=3&ref=world

[accessed 24 December 2010]

The traffickers lured their victims with promises of a better life in Europe and took them to a voodoo priest before departure, the police said in a statement. The traffickers then smuggled them to Spain, where they told the victims they had to become prostitutes to repay a hefty debt for their journey or face the wrath of voodoo spirits.

Women were taken to a voodoo shrine and made to swear before a priest that they would never reveal the identities of the traffickers, he said. The priests took pieces of fingernails or hair from the women as part of the ritual.   “People here are very scared of the power of voodoo, so the traffickers tell the victims that if they do anything funny they will invoke voodoo,” Mr. Mojeed said in a telephone interview.

RIGHTS: Activists Demand that Spain Sign Convention Against Human Trafficking

Alicia Fraerman, Inter Press Service News Agency IPS, MADRID, Feb 13, 2008

www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=41182

[accessed 24 December 2010]

Gentiana Susaj, coordinator of the RED, said it is important for Spain to sign and ratify the Convention because it is one of the foremost European destination and transit countries for human trafficking. The victims are mainly women aged between 18 and 25 from Bulgaria, Ukraine, Russia, Romania, Brazil, Ecuador, Colombia and Nigeria.  These women are recruited in their countries of origin and taken abroad by mafias who deceive or coerce them. They are usually promised jobs in Spain, and when they arrive, most find themselves locked up in brothels.

Police arrest 60 people in crackdown on human trafficking ring

www.eitb24.com/new/en/B24_45095/life/SPANISH-REGION-ANDALUSIA-Police-arrest-60-people-in/

[access date unavailable]

Police in southern Spain arrested 60 people Thursday in a crackdown on a human trafficking ring that forced an estimated 2,000 Russian women into prostitution, an official said.

Authorities raided five brothels and nine homes in the province of Almeria, arresting 13 people suspected of leading the ring.

Investigators believe the women were brought to Spain with fake documentation and kept under strict lockdown in the nightclubs where they were forced to work.

Spanish police arrest 7 for human-trafficking

Associated Press AP, Madrid, 7 April 2007

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 11 September 2011]

The arrests took place in the northeastern Mediterranean coastal region of Costa Brava, where the gang allegedly smuggled in women, mostly from Russia, forcing them to work streetwalking or in roadside brothels, police said.  Police said the group employed two people based in St. Petersburg, Russia, who targeted women by offering jobs in Spain in exchange for Š2,000 (US$2,675).

Spanish, Bulgarian police dismantle alleged human trafficking ring

Associated Press AP, Sofia, October 17, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 11 September 2011]

The ring — allegedly led by 35-year-old Bulgarian, who was not identified by name — is suspected of organizing the smuggling of more than 500 women from eastern European countries into Spain, where police said the victims were treated as "sex slaves."  "The women's freedom of movement was restricted, and they were often subjected to violence," Petrov said, adding that they were forced to work as prostitutes.

Spanish general prosecutor: Human trafficking, main Romanian problem in Spain

Denisa Maruntoiu, 12 October 2006 -- Source: www.daily-news.ro/article_detail.php?idarticle=30691

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 24 June 2013]

HUMAN TRAFFICKING MAIN ROMANIAN PROBLEM IN SPAIN - Spain's general prosecutor Candido Conde Pumpido stressed yesterday that the biggest problem the Spanish judicial authorities face when it comes to Romanians is the human trafficking.

Spanish police have broken up a gang of Romanian human traffickers

Siskind's Immigration Bulletin

www.visalaw.com/05jun4/8jun405.html

[accessed 24 December 2010]

INTERNATIONAL ROUNDUP - Spanish police have broken up a gang of Romanian human traffickers who were faking identity documents and credit cards. Twenty-two people have been arrested, the majority of them Romanians.  The gang specialized in bringing Romanian women, often under-age girls, to Spain to force them into prostitution.

Spanish police rescue hostage boy

BBC News, 9 June 2006

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/5063150.stm

[accessed 23 December 2010]

Spain has cracked a number of groups smuggling Nigerian women.  Two Nigerian women have been arrested in Spain accused of stealing a child and forcing his mother into prostitution to pay their ransom. The mother, also Nigerian, claims her son was snatched from her shortly after he was born four years ago. She said the women demanded 45,000 euros (£31,000) for his return and threatened her with "voodoo".

Spanish Police Arrest 14 in Crackdown on Immigrant Prostitution Ring

Associated Press AP, Madrid, 2005-06-06

www.libertadlatina.org/eur_spain_police_arrest_14_free_54_enslaved_brazilian_women_05-06-2005.htm

[accessed 24 December 2010]

The group recruited hundreds of women coming mainly from Brazil. Gang members arranged passports and air tickets to Spain, where the women were persuaded and forced to work illegally as prostitutes in clubs in the southern regions of Andalusia and Extremadura and then to hand over their earnings, a police statement said.

FG Smashes Human Trafficking Syndicate

Kingsley Newzeh & Iyefu Adoba, This Day, Abuja, 25 January 2005

www.accessmylibrary.com/article-1G1-127782432/fg-smashes-human-trafficking.html

[accessed 24 June 2013]

According to Babandede, the parcel contained shocking pornographic photographs of Nigerian girls based in Spain, agreement of debt bondage to their "madams," Spanish immigration documents, pubic hairs, menstrual discharge pads and payment records.

Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 1   Civil Liberties: 1   Status: Free

2009 Edition

www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/2009/spain

[accessed 28 June 2012]

Human Rights Overview

Human Rights Watch

www.hrw.org/europecentral-asia/spain

[accessed 24 December 2010]

U.S. Library of Congress - Country Study

Library of Congress Call Number DP17 .S67 1990

lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/estoc.html

[accessed 24 December 2010]

The Price of a Slave in Brazil

Bernardete Toneto, [originally in Portuguese in the newspaper Brasil de Fato], February 2004

www.brazzil.com/component/content/article/74-february-2004/1662.html

[accessed 17 April 2012]

AN ANIMAL IN A ZOO - Before leaving Brazil, I suspected prostitution but I never imagined that I would be a prisoner, threatened day and night. At the house, we were slaves. I never got anything, not money, not clothes. I didn't have my documents so I couldn't leave. We were given very little food, and we had to stay up until 5 am every day, trying to get customers.

We couldn't even leave the house without being accompanied by "security." One of the girls was threatened with death after she left for a weekend. They thought she went looking for the Brazilian consulate. We never had routine medical exams, much less tests for AIDS.

I fled when I met a Brazilian customer to whom I told my story. It seems that he had contact with other groups because nine days after I told him my story he returned, gave me a false passport and a ticket back to Brazil.  I escaped, but even today I think of my friends there who are being held prisoners, like animals in a zoo.

ECPAT Spain launches a new campaign against the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC)

Madrid (Spain), June 2nd, 2004 – ECPAT Spain Consortium, Secretary of Communication

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 11 September 2011]

The campaign’s main goal is the prevention of CSEC by raising the awareness of people travelling from Spain to tourist destinations known to offer the opportunity to engage in sexual relationships with minors.

Dying to Leave - Human Trafficking Worldwide: Morocco

Thirteen, New York Public Media, September 25th, 2003

www.pbs.org/wnet/wideangle/episodes/dying-to-leave/human-trafficking-worldwide/morocco/1453/

[accessed 24 December 2010]

COUNTER-TRAFFICKING EFFORTS - In 2001, tensions between Spain and Morocco increased as government officials on each side blamed the other country for smuggling and trafficking problems in the region. Spain accused Morocco of not doing enough to limit the illegal activities, while Morocco claimed that Spanish mafia gangs were responsible for the increase in the number of illegal immigrants who tried to enter Spain by boat from Morocco. These days Spain has set up a network of sensors and cameras along the coast to intercept illegal migrants.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery - Spain", http://gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Spain.htm, [accessed <date>]

 

 

Torture in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Spain]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Spain]  [other countries]